Animal Assisted Therapy and The Bowlby Center for Animal Assisted Therapy

Animal Assisted Therapy and The Bowlby Center for Animal Assisted Therapy

Only after a few initial sessions the children began to bring to therapy their inner world, their experiences, their difficulties in the new format of life, the conflicts created in the intense relationship with parents and siblings, lack of leisure frameworks and distance with extended family members and fantasies related to what the virus caused. As part of a return to normalcy, the therapeutic setting has become an intermediate space, (Winnicott, 1971), a bridge between the inside and the outside, between reality and fantasy, between there and then – versus here and now.

Unfortunately, the second wave of the epidemic is approaching us and threatening again. In AAT an important goal related to the near future is to help our patient maintain and adhere to a routine of normalcy as much as possible. Some children are already mature for developing a kind of integration in the current circumstances of their lives, while for other children the dissociation is the protective mechanism they need to maintain themselves. The professionalism of the therapists and the zoological space will be once again, powerful tools to help everyone with their needs and abilities. The time will come for understanding and insight into what is happening to us in the current period…



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Marta LejzenDr. Marta Lejzen PsyD is a Clinical Psychologist. She received her MA degree in "Universidad de Buenos Aires", Argentina, and received her PsyD Degree in the Professional School of Psychology in Sacramento, California. Her dissertation is focused on Child Play in Animal Assisted Therapy. Marta Lejzen had worked many years in the "Israeli Sheba Medical Center", as Senior Clinical Psychologist, and as a Teacher and Supervisor in the Psychiatric Unit. In recent years, Marta had held a position as head of the Animal Assisted Therapy programs in "The Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and Arts" in Israel, and has taught courses in the field of Animal Assisted Therapy at the "Hachva Teachers Seminar" (Israel) and in the Medical Track at the "Tel Aviv University"(Israel) in the Department of Psychology. Currently and during the last twenty years, Marta serves as Chief Director of the "Bowlby Center for Animal Assisted Therapy and Education", Israel. Bowlby, employs a professional treatment team, which specialize in variety of therapy methods in the field. The sessions take place in zoos, as well as in petting zoos and zoological spaces, located in different regions of Israel. The Bowlby Center also offers advanced studies for professional staff and training courses for therapists.

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